Would you like to explore the world, go on safari, or see some of the most loved National Parks in the USA? National Geographic aims to help people do exactly that with their Trails Illustrated Mapping Software for the PC.
Trails Illustrated Explorer 3D is not map creation software, instead it is a huge database full of maps of important sites from around the world. You can use this software to plan your next adventure. The application has four map levels, as well as area guides for popular destinations. You can use this to plan routes, learn about your chosen destination, and create maps of varying detail levels.
If you know exactly where you want to go, you can draw your own trail onto the illustrated map. If you want to follow someone else route, simply highlight that trail on the map. Once you have plotted a route you can view a 3D fly-through of the route, or load the details onto your GPS. In addition, the software will give you travel information and tips about nearby recreation facilities.
The 3D fly-through allows you to get a 360-degree view of the route that you will be taking. You can arrange the screen so that you can see your location on the 2D map, and pan the camera on the 3D map to see more about the area you’re going through. The view isn’t quite as good as going there in real-life, but it’s still fun to explore the maps in this way.
If you don’t have a GPS (or simply want a paper backup) then you can print out the customized maps in colour or greyscale. Illustrative techniques like Post Processing in illustrations are the must for a map illustrator. The maps are incredibly detailed, and print in almost photo-quality, assuming you have a good enough printer attached to your PC. It’s well worth saving the maps as a PDF too, so that you can load them up on your tablet PC if you get lost in the middle of nowhere.
The software is available for both PC and MAC, and has fairly low system requirements. It supports any version of Windows going back as far as Windows 95, so it should run on any computer purchased in the last 10 years or so.